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How about a CMBN and 2.0 bundle?

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Thanks for the response and clarity of your reasoning. I can see where you are coming from but I still think it's something you might want to think about and reconsider. Perhaps I'm comparing your pricing structure to wider games pricing and discounting but then most gamers will do that also.

Happily for me this is unlikely to affect my future CM purchases because I have the means now to purchase all future products on release. Unfortunately, it just means I will have to give the BN modules a miss altogether.

X Rebirth beckons! :P

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Now I'm going to step in again and suggest to Steppenwulf (cool name, BTW) that you are doing yourself a disservice if you fail to purchase the CMBN modules. They are well worth the $$, IMO.

Steve has stated the the Upgrade path of older CM2 titles is a pain for them, but I very much appreciate the fact that they take the time to offer this in order to keep the features of older titles current with their newest releases. $10 is a pittance.

Anyway, like I stated earlier in this thread, BFC would be well served, IMO, to go ahead and put together a CMBN+CW+2.0+MG bundle patched to the latest version at a discount for new players who want to go "all in" right from the start. I would think $80 would be a good price point. Sure, that's about twice what your average Joe Bob gamer will pay for a current game from Steam, but CM players aren't your average gamers, IMO.

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I understand your chain of reasoning, the problem is that nobody actually thinks that way.

I disagree. First, because it isn't a "patch". The concept of upgraded functionality, at a cost, has been around for as long as software has been. It's a VERY common concept and I don't think many people are unaware of it. Sure, it is extremely uncommon for games to provide an upgrade path as they typically intend their games to have limited play value or plan on having people repurchase at full price a year or two down the road. So yes, I do understand that it's not usual for a game company to provide so much long term value and a incredibly cheap way to extend it with new features year after year. If Photoshop provided cheap upgrades my copy wouldn't say copyright 2003 on it every time I load it :D

I agree that some people won't get this any more than some people won't get why it's bad to smoke or that showing up to work is a key concept to holding down a job. But we can't build a viable business based on such customers. There's too few and they'll just find some other reason to want to claim they should get more stuff for nothing.

Nobody sees 'product at reduced price' because the reduction is invisible. They just see 'product' and 'additional cost to *fix* product'.

I agree it would be better to have the bundled v2.0 for marketing reasons for one reason, though it does create the possibility of someone accidentally buying the wrong one and then complaining about it. The way it is now that can't happen.

Thanks for the response and clarity of your reasoning. I can see where you are coming from but I still think it's something you might want to think about and reconsider. Perhaps I'm comparing your pricing structure to wider games pricing and discounting but then most gamers will do that also.

If I could snap my fingers and move us to a "Buyer's Club" model, getting rid of bundles in the process, I would do it in a heartbeat. I think it's a better model for customers and certainly one for us long term. The problem is we'd have to put in a couple of months of work into redoing the store and that sort of effort is unimaginable right now given how many other things we're trying to do with our limited time/resources.

Anyway, like I stated earlier in this thread, BFC would be well served, IMO, to go ahead and put together a CMBN+CW+2.0+MG bundle patched to the latest version at a discount for new players who want to go "all in" right from the start.

In theory I totally agree with you. But then I think about how many people are likely to bite for everything at once if they haven't already had significant CMBN time under their belts. And if that's the case then they already have the biggest chunk of it purchased already, which would mean there's probably not much of a market for a one big Bundle.

Steve

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In theory I totally agree with you. But then I think about how many people are likely to bite for everything at once if they haven't already had significant CMBN time under their belts. And if that's the case then they already have the biggest chunk of it purchased already, which would mean there's probably not much of a market for a one big Bundle.

That might be correct, but really, how hard would it be for you to offer the Big Bundle via your store?

Anyway, it doesn't matter to me, from a financial standpoint, because I tend to preorder all CM WW2 titles, and thus I pay full price. What does matter to me is the continued existence of the CM franchise, because, hey, I like to play CM, especially via PBEM. If this means finding ways to shepherd new players into the franchise as easily (both monetarily, and otherwise) as possible, then I will get behind it. My current fear is potential new players seeing the confusing abundance of games+modules+upgrades+patches+cost and just walking away. The Big Bundle might help to solve some of that.

Just sayin.

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Does it really make such a difference to lower the entry point from $55 to $45? Is $50 some kind of limit where people stop buying games?

Just asking - I would have guessed that people who are in to this type of game wouldn't make much of the difference.

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That might be correct, but really, how hard would it be for you to offer the Big Bundle via your store?

Significant. What you guys don't see is how long it takes to move such a massive dedicated install around. On it's own it's a big chunk, but it's only one of many. And every time there's an update there's a potential need to have to go through and redo everything. Each one of those has to be created, moved twice internally, uploaded for testers, downloaded by testers, and HOPEFULLY then made live for customers. The whole process has to be repeated if there's a problem found, which is more fun than I can tell you :D

Does it really make such a difference to lower the entry point from $55 to $45? Is $50 some kind of limit where people stop buying games?

Just asking - I would have guessed that people who are in to this type of game wouldn't make much of the difference.

In the US, at least, $50 is considered a "magic number". So having something under $50 is important for customer psychology. Because you spend money in Euros and last time a checked a USD is worth about 2 cents. At least it feels that way when I purchase things from Germany :D

Steve

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You've lost me here. What you say doesn't square with what we're actually offering. Because pricing depends on the specific option you choose (download only, download and hardcopy, or hardcopy) let's just use one example.

CMBN v1.x = $55 (price prior to Upgrade 2.0)

CMBN v1.x = $45 (current price)

CMBN Upgrade 2.0 = $10

This means if you go to the website today and purchase CMBN v1.x and Upgrade 2.0 you will spend $55. This is exactly the same price you would have paid for v1.x last year prior to the release of Upgrade 2.0. Therefore if you buy just the Base Game today it costs you nothing more than it would have last year without v2.0 features.

Now, if you already have CMBN v1.x you can purchase Market Garden with the v2.0 Bundle you save $5 off the cost of the Upgrade. If you're a new customer you can purchase a v1.x Bundle at a double discounted price (one for the bundle part and one because it's v1.x).

That's the way it has been for just about one year. Over that time period we've not seen much confusion or negative commentary about the pricing system or the options available. I say much because I can assure you that after 14 years I know there is absolutely nothing we do, or don't do, that doesn't get someone complaining about something :D

Steve

Ok, first off, thank you for the replies. Its nice to know you guys are watching the forums. What I am simply trying to say is that I do not want v.1. That is the bundle offered with CW. If I want V.2, I will have to either buy 2.0 upgrade separately with CMBN or buy the whole tamale, modules and all, the way you guys presently have it setup. Now, while I would love to have the whole tamale, I just cant afford it now. I do plan on eventually getting it but not now. What I was hoping for from you guys, is a bundle with CMBN AND 2.0 together. Then I don't have the added immediate expense of the two modules right away. Sure, I can buy CMBN for $35 and the 2.0 upgrade for $10 for a total of $45. But then the two modules separately, since they are not bundled, would be an additional $70. My total cost then is $115! Sure, that may be cheaper than when the game first came out, but it isn't the $90 total costs for the present bundles you DO offer now. I would like to be able to buy the game and its modules for the cost you are offering it at, ie; $90. But I cannot buy it all at once with the options available to me at this time in the store. I am simply saying it would be nice if you could simply offer the $90 total price in bundles that I can use.

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What I was hoping for from you guys, is a bundle with CMBN AND 2.0 together.

But that's not a "bundle"... that's just the current version, and therefore no discount. There's only a discount for the older version because you're getting less stuff. Let me try to explain this again.

Let's say that the current Combat Mission is $45. That's the base price and it remains true no matter what the current version is, be it v1.x, v2.x, v3.x, etc. The previous version, however, is discounted to $35. If you want the OLDER version with OLDER features then you pay $10 less. If you want the NEWER version with the NEWER features, then you pay $10 more. There is no third option because it's only possible to buy the older version or the newer version.

From a pricing standpoint it doesn't matter one iota if you purchase the current version in one or two pieces because in the end you wind up with the same exact product for the same exact price. The only benefit of having an installer that already has Upgrade 2.0 built in is one less installation step. Which is a good thing for sure, but we have to weigh that against the practical problems associated with building, testing, moving, and maintaining yet another batch of installers.

I am simply saying it would be nice if you could simply offer the $90 total price in bundles that I can use.

Here's the math using the least expensive (download only) option if you buy everything at one time

Base Game + Commonwealth Bundle = $55

Market Garden + Upgrade 2.0 Bundle = $40

===============

Total = $95

If you instead want to wait on buying Market Garden or Upgrade 2.0 then the cost is $5 higher because there's a savings if you buy Market Garden + Upgrade 2.0 as a Bundle:

Base Game + Commonwealth = $55

Market Garden = $35

Upgrade 2.0 = $10

===============

Total = $100

Dunno where you got $115 from.

Steve

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Because you spend money in Euros and last time a checked a USD is worth about 2 cents. At least it feels that way when I purchase things from Germany :D

Strange - whenever I buy something from the US the exchange rate seems always to be 1:1. Yes, I'm looking at you, Apple. :mad:

:)

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I'm going to chime in on this discussion. The following is my opinion based on my experience as a computer gamer/consumer from the early pc (8088) days until now.

Recently I purchased several games I had interest in on Steam (some for myself and some for a friend). I paid ~$5 for each title. These titles usually sell for $35-$45 dollars on Steam. Since I know Steam has sales with drastically reduced prices I rarely pay the full retail price for games available there.

I held off on buying Battlefield 3 for over a year for 2 reasons; to get a lower price, and to wait for the release bugs to be squashed. The recently released BF4 just released their first DLC and people are furious they are publishing DLC rather than fixing release bugs.

I bought Crysis on release several years ago and they didn't attempt to fix the online issues, they released Crysis Warhead instead, their reason for this choice, per them, was piracy made it impossible for them to put any more resources into the title. That means people like me who bought the game were out of luck - lesson learned for me (and no more Crysis titles for me either).

This brings me to CM and BF. I have bought every CM game with the exception of Afghanistan (I still haven't played most of the CMSF module scenarios and CMBN was on the horizon so I took a pass). I fully understand that BF is a small company developing and publishing their games in a niche market. I also acknowledge and respect BF for the way they stand behind their titles.

So, as one who bargain shops for games, I've got to say I have never bought a CM bundle. I throw that strategy out the window when it comes to CM.

All that said, if I were BF and I wanted to use pricing to give people an incentive to buy I would do the following.

I would stop selling v1 CMBN - I think the demos are a very nice way to get into the game and they off a terrific bang for the buck... :)

I would discount all modules purchased with a game, e.g., $5 off for one module $10 off for 2. This would serve as an enticement for someone who has played the demo to buy more than the base game when they make a purchase. If cost is an issue it may mean one has to wait to buy, but it lets one buy in for less in the long run. This also allows bargain hunters who are willing to wait to save a little cash.

As one with a track record of being a bargain hunter for most games after having payed full price on release only to be burned, I have always pre-ordered and paid full price for CM games (with the exception of CMBO which I learned about after release), primarily due to BF's track record and my amazement with CM. I have always viewed CM as a unique experience and as such I have been willing to put up with circumstances I wouldn't otherwise put up with (yes... I'm talking about the DRM).

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I'm going to chime in on this discussion. The following is my opinion based on my experience as a computer gamer/consumer from the early pc (8088) days until now.

Same here, only I started with the C=64 since 8088 platforms only had computer speaker sound and 3(?) colors. I moved to DOS somewhere around 80286/80386 and EGA.

Recently I purchased several games I had interest in on Steam (some for myself and some for a friend). I paid ~$5 for each title. These titles usually sell for $35-$45 dollars on Steam. Since I know Steam has sales with drastically reduced prices I rarely pay the full retail price for games available there.

Same here. I bought a lot of games on Steam during their last big sales event. I haven't even loaded half of them yet.

I held off on buying Battlefield 3 for over a year for 2 reasons; to get a lower price, and to wait for the release bugs to be squashed. The recently released BF4 just released their first DLC and people are furious they are publishing DLC rather than fixing release bugs.

I don't know anything about that series.

I bought Crysis on release several years ago and they didn't attempt to fix the online issues, they released Crysis Warhead instead, their reason for this choice, per them, was piracy made it impossible for them to put any more resources into the title. That means people like me who bought the game were out of luck - lesson learned for me (and no more Crysis titles for me either).

I don't know anything about the Crysis series either, except I read "somewhere" that it had a good storyline.

This brings me to CM and BF. I have bought every CM game with the exception of Afghanistan (I still haven't played most of the CMSF module scenarios and CMBN was on the horizon so I took a pass). I fully understand that BF is a small company developing and publishing their games in a niche market. I also acknowledge and respect BF for the way they stand behind their titles.

Mostly the same here, except I don't tend to buy the modern CM games. Perhaps that may change in the future.

So, as one who bargain shops for games, I've got to say I have never bought a CM bundle. I throw that strategy out the window when it comes to CM.

Same here. If it's CM and WW2, I preorder it.

All that said, if I were BF and I wanted to use pricing to give people an incentive to buy I would do the following.

I would stop selling v1 CMBN - I think the demos are a very nice way to get into the game and they off a terrific bang for the buck... :)

I agree. Time to stop selling v1 CMBN. All that does is create confusion, regardless of the price point.

I would discount all modules purchased with a game, e.g., $5 off for one module $10 off for 2. This would serve as an enticement for someone who has played the demo to buy more than the base game when they make a purchase. If cost is an issue it may mean one has to wait to buy, but it lets one buy in for less in the long run. This also allows bargain hunters who are willing to wait to save a little cash.

Good idea.

As one with a track record of being a bargain hunter for most games after having payed full price on release only to be burned, I have always pre-ordered and paid full price for CM games (with the exception of CMBO which I learned about after release), primarily due to BF's track record and my amazement with CM. I have always viewed CM as a unique experience and as such I have been willing to put up with circumstances I wouldn't otherwise put up with (yes... I'm talking about the DRM).

Agreed, though I probably preordered CMBO.....can't remember back that far, that was too many beers ago.

Good post, sfhand. Yes, it's time to let go of CMBN v1.

And I'm still for the release of the Big Bundle (CMBN+CW+2.0+MG+all current patches) for $80(ish).

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Same here, only I started with the C=64 since 8088 platforms only had computer speaker sound and 3(?) colors. I moved to DOS somewhere around 80286/80386 and EGA.

Credit where credit is due: The C64 was built around the 6502 CPU. A classic that most people of a certain age on this board got their starts with.

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Now that CMBN is essentially finished, with the possible exception of a "pack", perhaps it would be a good decision to offer a CMBN/CW/MG bundle patched to the latest version (2.12 as I type this), and price it at something like $80?

Anyway, like I stated earlier in this thread, BFC would be well served, IMO, to go ahead and put together a CMBN+CW+2.0+MG bundle patched to the latest version at a discount for new players who want to go "all in" right from the start. I would think $80 would be a good price point. Sure, that's about twice what your average Joe Bob gamer will pay for a current game from Steam, but CM players aren't your average gamers, IMO.

In theory I totally agree with you. But then I think about how many people are likely to bite for everything at once if they haven't already had significant CMBN time under their belts. And if that's the case then they already have the biggest chunk of it purchased already, which would mean there's probably not much of a market for a one big Bundle.

Steve

Any lurker like me reading the forums waiting for a CMBN complete pack? :-)

This may sound crazy but i have a policy to buy only complete and finished game. And with this module system, I don't regard game being finished unless literally stated by Battlefront that no expansions/modules/whatever is coming. (This said i love the idea of upgrades which will keep older games on par with new releases, feature vise.)

I've bought CMSF only after BF stated they are moving to CMBN. This in turn meant i had a LOT of time to enjoy CMSF and not being tempted by CMBN. Weird strategy, i know, but it works for me.

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...

And I'm still for the release of the Big Bundle (CMBN+CW+2.0+MG+all current patches) for $80(ish).

To me, that seems like a large discount for a niche title...

I, admittedly, don't know much about marketing, sales, or software development, so, my opinions in this arena could be wildly off target, which is why I tried to stick to BF's current pricing/bundle structure in my post.

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But that's not a "bundle"... that's just the current version, and therefore no discount. There's only a discount for the older version because you're getting less stuff. Let me try to explain this again.

Let's say that the current Combat Mission is $45. That's the base price and it remains true no matter what the current version is, be it v1.x, v2.x, v3.x, etc. The previous version, however, is discounted to $35. If you want the OLDER version with OLDER features then you pay $10 less. If you want the NEWER version with the NEWER features, then you pay $10 more. There is no third option because it's only possible to buy the older version or the newer version.

From a pricing standpoint it doesn't matter one iota if you purchase the current version in one or two pieces because in the end you wind up with the same exact product for the same exact price. The only benefit of having an installer that already has Upgrade 2.0 built in is one less installation step. Which is a good thing for sure, but we have to weigh that against the practical problems associated with building, testing, moving, and maintaining yet another batch of installers.

Here's the math using the least expensive (download only) option if you buy everything at one time

Base Game + Commonwealth Bundle = $55

Market Garden + Upgrade 2.0 Bundle = $40

===============

Total = $95

If you instead want to wait on buying Market Garden or Upgrade 2.0 then the cost is $5 higher because there's a savings if you buy Market Garden + Upgrade 2.0 as a Bundle:

Base Game + Commonwealth = $55

Market Garden = $35

Upgrade 2.0 = $10

===============

Total = $100

Dunno where you got $115 from.

Steve

Look at your store! The CMBN and CW bundle is $55. The MG and 2.0 bundle is $40. However, if I purchase CMBN and 2.0 each alone, that comes to $45, which is what you said because I just bought the upgraded version of CMBN; 2.0. Then, later on when I can afford it, I buy the two modules singly as you presently have them, they come to another $70, hence, $115! This is what I am trying to tell you guys. If you have bundles now that presently are a total of $95, why cant I get the bundles I need for $95 also?

Now the second point Ive been trying to make is the same reasoning YOU guys used for your present bundles pricing. If you can take some $25 off your CMBN and CW bundle, couldn't you take a similar percentage off a bundle of MG and CW that I can use?

And concerning the pricing standpoint, if I buy CMBN and CW bundle, it is version 1.0. I cannot play the game then with my buddy who just purchased everything. I would have to wait until I could afford to get the MG and 2.0 bundle. Get it? What I am trying to say is, I cant play the game with my pal the way it is presently bundled until I afford to buy the whole ball of wax. I would like to have a CMBN and 2.0 bundle.

Try and look at this from my standpoint. Does anyone else understand what I am trying to say?

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... Unfortunately, it just means I will have to give the BN modules a miss altogether.

X Rebirth beckons! :P

Based on reviews and player feedback (I know, there are some who reject this as an aid to game purchase decisions) I'd say the win/win solution for you would be to take a pass on X Rebirth and buy the modules. :)

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Look at your store! The CMBN and CW bundle is $55. The MG and 2.0 bundle is $40. However, if I purchase CMBN and 2.0 each alone, that comes to $45, which is what you said because I just bought the upgraded version of CMBN; 2.0. Then, later on when I can afford it, I buy the two modules singly as you presently have them, they come to another $70, hence, $115! This is what I am trying to tell you guys. If you have bundles now that presently are a total of $95, why cant I get the bundles I need for $95 also?

Because what you're asking for isn't a Bundle. A Bundle is a bunch of products put together for a SINGLE one time purchase. That's not just what we call it, that's the standard practice for such things. The purpose of a Bundle is to act as an incentive for a customer to purchase things either at once or that he wouldn't normally buy. From a retailer's standpoint both have value and so offering a discount is a good trade off.

This we do.

What we do not do is what I've already talked about. And that is something called a "Buyer's Club" (just one name for it). This is a TOTALLY different approach. In this system a customer is rewarded for cumulative purchases made over a specified amount of time. Some clubs require an annual membership fee which is calculated to be just above what the average person would buy without the club. Meaning, the customer is tempted to buy more stuff to make joining the club worth while.

The other common form is to have no fee but to start giving customers a discount after X amount spent or some other metric. The most common form of this is the punch cards you get at coffee shops or "rewards programs" from various retailers. In this system the more you buy the more you save, so to speak. It can be a flat fee, stepped based on how much you spend, capped, not capped... all kinds of approaches.

Neither of these we do because we don't have the software capacity to do either method.

So the short answer to your question is we don't do it because it would require a major investment of time and money to make it possible. That means we would need to perceive a "club" system as overall increasing our sales above what we would have now AND above what the new system would cost us. Otherwise it's a money loser for us and for profit companies that deliberately harm their sales for no gain don't tend to last very long.

As I said already, if I could snap my fingers and have a club type system in place for customers... I think I'd do it. At least that's my inclination. But it's not in the cards for the near future at least. I will say that if we do have to ditch our store software this is certainly a feature I'd be looking for in a replacement.

Now the second point Ive been trying to make is the same reasoning YOU guys used for your present bundles pricing. If you can take some $25 off your CMBN and CW bundle, couldn't you take a similar percentage off a bundle of MG and CW that I can use?

Now this we could technically do. It means yet another install that we have to maintain and test. It is something to consider.

And concerning the pricing standpoint, if I buy CMBN and CW bundle, it is version 1.0. I cannot play the game then with my buddy who just purchased everything. I would have to wait until I could afford to get the MG and 2.0 bundle. Get it? What I am trying to say is, I cant play the game with my pal the way it is presently bundled until I afford to buy the whole ball of wax. I would like to have a CMBN and 2.0 bundle.

No, that's just your personal choice. If you want to play with your buddy now, then spend the $10 to upgrade to v2.0. Later when you want Market Garden you will only lose $5 worth of savings opportunity. $5 is not much. And before you say it is, do you smoke, drink coffee, go to McDonalds, or have a beer out every once and a while? Because all of those things pretty much cost more than $5 each time you make a purchase. Someone who tells me that they can't afford $5 is going to have to do a lot of convincing to make me a believer :D

Try and look at this from my standpoint. Does anyone else understand what I am trying to say?

Yes, but you don't seem to quite understand what you're asking for. Hopefully this post will get us on the same page.

Steve

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To me, that seems like a large discount for a niche title...

This is exactly the case. These things cost us a LOT of time to do. Smart people think of time as having an "opportunity cost". Which is to say that if you spend time doing A then you're not spending time doing B. If B can make you more money than A you need to factor that into the strategy for A or you should instead make B.

The other thing that has to be considered is the basic costs that aren't necessarily related to value. Credit card companies charge us the same % on a cheaper product as a more expensive one. Making an installer for a cheaper product might actually cost more than on an expensive product. Time spent promoting products is probably about the same. The hourly rates charged by the people working on the products is the same. Etc. etc.

Which means that if we discount things too much then we're effectively losing money. Sometimes a money losing strategy pays off overall if volume in other areas increases. But in this niche any strategy that relies upon significant increases in overall sales is pretty much bound to disappoint. Even in mass markets it's a risky venture. Just ask Microsoft about what X-Box has done for their bottom line :D

Steve

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Now this we could technically do. It means yet another install that we have to maintain and test. It is something to consider.

Steve

What did you think I mean't when I originally referred to a 'bundle for CW and MG'? I mean you can call it whatever you wish -buyer's club, time depreciated value or a BUNDLE - but it still amounts to the same thing; it's still a discount for the purchaser that functions as an incentive to actually spend more. And I am clearly not the only one who wants to give you my money. I'd suggest that you will get this customer request recurring in your later CM titles in any case so...

Based on reviews and player feedback (I know, there are some who reject this as an aid to game purchase decisions) I'd say the win/win solution for you would be to take a pass on X Rebirth and buy the modules. :)

sfhand - yes I have also read a number of reviews and you are quite right about this. Thanks for the heads-up! So the ball is back in BF's court. I will happily hold my spending money back till January, if I merely heard that a CW/MG bundle will be forthcoming.

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EXACTLY! I don't want 1.0 and I wont buy it. I wouldn't be able to play the game with most people. My pal who I game with can buy 2.0 as he can afford the outlay. I can not. I also want the features that 2.0 brings. Yet you are FORCING me to choose between buying 1.0 or buying ALL of 2.0. What kind of choice is that? If I can at least purchase CMBN and 2.0 at the bundle price, I can then play him. I'll get the modules later when I can afford them. How many others out there are in similar situation? You are freezing out part of your market.

This is what I am waiting for; I'm glad this is being brought up.

I have already bought the base CMBN game but I am waiting for a somewhat reduced price 2.0 bundle with all the Normandy titles. I check the store periodically wishfully thinking that this will happen.

I bought the steel case that came with the early CMBN orders. I'd like to fill it with fully updated games.

Because of the different price points with these games I'll wait to buy until the fully updated option becomes available.

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I'm looking into getting some CMBN battles going with some people in my Band of Brothers club again after a long hiatus from CM. I currently, just own the basic CMBN v1, and I'm pretty confused by all the different options currently available to me (not to mention wariness of the hefty price tag of getting them all). At the very least, I plan to pay the $10 uprgrade fee for version 2 of CMBN.

My main question is this: Will I be able to play some sort of PBEM game with someone that has all of the different modules installed (CMBN basic, Common Wealth, and Market Garden) on their computer or does my opponent need to have a downgraded, separate installation that matches mine exactly?

With regards to the Market Garden module, does this rely upon the installation of the Common Wealth module? Market Garden has a lot of Common Wealth forces in it, right? If I do buy Market Garden but not the Common Wealth forces module, does this mean that I can only play with American and German forces when using Market Garden?

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Players have to be on the same version and patch to play each other. That means that players without version 2 can only play those with version 1 also, and those with version 2 can only play against version 2's (although creating a second install of version 1 is a way to remain backward compatible).

Regarding the modules; MG is version 2 only so that is a prequisite upgrade for using the module.

The 'modular' limitations experienced by the player is through the scenarios which require the same modules to access the OOB that the scenario was created with.

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